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Friday Bird Droppings: Where ex-Orioles are finding new homes

Jonathan Schoop is heading back to the AL on a one-year deal with the Twins. And there’s sure to be more hot stove action at MLB’s winter meetings, which start in two days.

Tampa Bay Rays v Baltimore Orioles Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images

Good morning, Camden Chatters.

The Orioles might not have made many changes to their roster yet this offseason, but there are plenty of former Orioles around MLB to keep tabs on. One of them, fan favorite Jonathan Schoop, has found a new baseball home for 2019: the Minnesota Twins. Schoop signed a one-year, $7.5 million deal with the club yesterday after the Brewers non-tendered him last week.

Here’s hoping Schoop shakes off his horrendous experience in Milwaukee and re-establishes himself as a solid player, if not the All Star he was for the Orioles in 2017. Perhaps a return to the league with which he’s most familiar, along with the relative stress-free environment of a team that’s not in the thick of the postseason hunt, will help Schoop return to form. The Orioles will get an early look at him in 2019; they play the Twins on back-to-back weekends from April 19-21 (in Baltimore) and April 26-28 (in Minnesota)...and then never play them again for the rest of the season. Schedules are weird.

As expected, the Orioles had no reported interest in re-signing Schoop, even at those relatively modest contract terms. The new O’s administration doesn’t have any particular ties to Schoop, and he doesn’t really fit their rebuilding effort. While it might have been fun to see him back in Baltimore — if nothing else, to give the club at least one recognizable name — it wasn’t in the cards.

I thought Schoop might hold out to see where his BFF Manny Machado ends up signing and see if he could tag along. But with Machado’s sky-high contract demands, he probably won’t be signing anywhere for quite a while, and Schoop understandably didn’t want to wait. I think we can safely say Machado will not be joining Schoop with the Twins.


A year after the Orioles shopped Manny Machado, the Paul Goldschmidt trade gives glimpse of winter offers for stars - Baltimore Sun
Jon Meoli analyzes the blockbuster Paul Goldschmidt trade to the Cardinals and wonders whether the Orioles could’ve gotten a similar package if they’d traded Manny Machado last winter.

Mills and Clark remain under contract with Orioles - School of Roch
Alan Mills and Howie Clark will reportedly be sticking with the Orioles in as-yet-undetermined roles, while the other 2018 coaches are “wondering if a new manager might want to bring them back.” I’m going to guess no. Coaching for a 115-loss team, which had almost no players perform up to expectations, doesn’t exactly brighten up a resume.

Is Nunez the Orioles’ answer at third? -
If the question is, “Can he be a warm body until someone better comes along?” then sure, Nunez might be the answer.

2019 early MLB mock draft -
MLB Pipeline writer Jonathan Mayo pegs the Orioles to pick Oregon State catcher Adley Rutschman with the No. 1 overall pick in 2019. Of course, a lot can change between now and June.

Orioles birthdays and history

Is today your birthday? Happy birthday! Your two Orioles birthday buddies are 1972-74 outfielder Rich Coggins (68) and 1955-56 catcher Hal Smith (88). Coggins was one of the pieces the Orioles traded, along with Dave McNally, to acquire Ken Singleton in 1974, while Smith was one of the 10 players the O’s received in their MLB-record 17-player swap with the Yankees in 1954.

Speaking of trades, on this day in 1977, the Orioles dealt starting pitcher Rudy May and two others to the Expos for outfielder Gary Roenicke and righty Don Stanhouse. Stanhouse was an All-Star closer for the Birds in 1979, and Roenicke was elected to the Orioles Hall of Fame after an eight-year career in Baltimore, mostly serving as the right-handed side of an outfield platoon with John Lowenstein.